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Nonfiction: Science, Social-Science
Unabridged Publication date: 10/16/2018

NEW! Now Available


How the Wiring of Our Brains Shapes Who We Are

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Audio CD ISBN:9781684416721
Digital Download ISBN:9781684416738


A leading neuroscientist explains why your personal traits are more innate than you think.

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Product Description

A leading neuroscientist explains why your personal traits are more innate than you think

What makes you the way you are—and what makes each of us different from everyone else? In Innate, leading neuroscientist and popular science blogger Kevin Mitchell traces human diversity and individual differences to their deepest level: in the wiring of our brains. Deftly guiding us through important new research, including his own groundbreaking work, he explains how variations in the way our brains develop before birth strongly influence our psychology and behavior throughout our lives, shaping our personality, intelligence, sexuality, and even the way we perceive the world.

We all share a genetic program for making a human brain, and the program for making a brain like yours is specifically encoded in your DNA. But, as Mitchell explains, the way that program plays out is affected by random processes of development that manifest uniquely in each person, even identical twins. The key insight of Innate is that the combination of these developmental and genetic variations creates innate differences in how our brains are wired—differences that impact all aspects of our psychology—and this insight promises to transform the way we see the interplay of nature and nurture.


"What makes people differ from one another, and how much does biology have to do with it? Kevin Mitchell bravely wades into some of the most politically fraught questions in science and delivers a clear, level-headed, up-to-the-minute account of what we do and don’t know."―Gary Marcus, author of Guitar Zero and The Birth of the Mind

Author Bio

Kevin J. Mitchell is associate professor at the Smurfit Institute of Genetics and the Institute of Neuroscience at Trinity College Dublin. He contributed to The Future of the Brain: Essays by the World's Leading Neuroscientists and runs a popular blog called Wiring the Brain. He lives in Portmarnock, Ireland.